The Miles Franklin Award

I want to stress that I have nothing against the Miles Franklin Award, as I see only positive things about it.

I just don’t feel like it should be so… celebrated. I mean, your book is published and Out There and being read. Why is it so important after that, that you get $60,000?

Maybe I’m being myopic about it all, but when I watched the winners being announced on stream and heard one past winner claim that winning “literally changed my life,” it sounded to me like someone that forgot to count their blessings in even being published.

Again, I might be the wrong demographic for this kind of thing, but I feel like it’s the people who are actually struggling, those that have some amazing stories to tell and just aren’t able to catch the hook to a literary agent or a publisher, that deserve to get a nice boon like $60,000.

I guess I just don’t understand why so much money is celebrated to somebody already selling books and being recognised. Hell, one past winner said that the award did amazing things to her life because of one word: sales. She simply sold more books.

Which is great, I mean, good on her. But I can’t help but feel that the award should be two-fold. The prestige and acclaim should go to the author of the best book, by all means. But the bulk of that money should go to someone struggling to even get there. Someone that’s written a good book that’s just not good enough to have been published yet. That’s who should be in the running for $60K.

And I say all this knowing, at this stage anyway, I would have no hope of winning given the state my first manuscript is in. I just know that $60,000 would actually change my life, because then we wouldn’t be struggling so hard, and I could actually spend more time writing books that are good, editing them into better, and revising them into the best they could be.

I can’t help but think there’s more benefit to that instead of taking already successful authors and giving them a stack of cash.

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